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Jim Underwood, talks with friends and family Tuesday, April 4, in Decatur at Doherty's Pub and Pins. Underwood won a seat on the Richland Community College Board of Trustees. Online gallery at

DECATUR — Two incumbents and one newcomer will be taking their place on the Richland Community College board.

Board President Bruce Campbell and Trustee Wayne Dunning, as well as newcomer Jim Underwood, were victorious in Tuesday night’s election for six-year terms.

With all precincts reporting in Macon and the seven other counties that voted on the candidates, Underwood finished with 12,556 votes to lead all four candidates. Campbell finished with 11,249 votes, while Dunning had 10,663 in unofficial results.

Melinda Westwater finished in fourth with 9,179 votes.

The eight counties that voted on the board includes Christian, DeWitt, Logan, Moultrie, Piatt, Sangamon, Shelby and Macon, the latter of which made up 83.7 percent of all votes.

In Macon County alone, Underwood finished with 10,196 votes, Campbell with 9,436, Dunning with 9,236, and Westwater with 7,690.

The three winners will be sworn at a special meeting this spring.

Campbell has served on the board since 2008, while Dunning has served on the board since 1993. Underwood, who is currently the chairman of the Macon County Democrats, had never run for the seat.

Underwood will replace current Trustee Larry Osborne, who did not seek re-election.

The winners will be asked to help guide the college as it heads through an era of declining enrollment and loss of state funds that have led to a quarter of its staff being laid off or offered buyouts.

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Macon County Reporter

Macon County reporter for the Herald & Review.

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